Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Senator Thom Tillis Fears GOP Will Be Seen As "Obstructionist" If It Blocks Obama SCOTUS Nominee

by JASmius

Which a lot of us see as a constitutional badge of honor, given what the Constitution-shredding enemy in the White House wants to do to the High Court, Senator.  You speak of it like it's a bad thing.

By the way, here's your second "yes" vote along with Lindsey Graham to move Obama's nominee out of the Senate Judiciary Committee, should Chairman Chuck Grassley cave and hold hearings this year, and shorten either Mitch McConnell's career or his lifespan.


The remarks from the North Carolina Republican are the first crack in GOP unity since Saturday’s stunning news of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s death, whose passing has put the tilt of the court in question. Scalia’s successor seems likely to determine whether its majority will lean liberal or conservative…

“I think we fall into the trap, if we just simply say sight unseen — we fall into the trap of being obstructionist,” he said in comments first noted by Think Progress, a left-leaning website.

And again I - we - say, "So the hell what?"  The pertinent phrase is "advice and CONSENT," not "advice and rubber stamp".  Constitutionally speaking, POTUS can nominate all he wants, but cannot appoint unless and until the Senate approves it.  And they are under no legal obligation to do so.

Political pressure is another matter, but that's a universal - and bipartisan - constant.  The latter part of which Senator Tillis appears to be forgetting, given the hypercane-force blowback that would ensue from his own "lines" were he and his colleagues daft enough to buckle on the anti-anti-Scalia blockade.

But, as with Senator Grassley, is that what Tillis is hinting here?  This followup suggests otherwise....:

Tillis added that he would not support a liberal nominee, and argued that Republicans should use “every device available” to block someone who is “in the mold of Barack Obama’s vision for America.”

.....and this one:

[Tillis] advised the president to nominate someone who has “an almost identical resume and capabilities of Justice Scalia.”

Since we can safely conclude that the chances of The One nominating even a "consensus" SCOTUS candidate, much less a Scalia clone, are non-existent, that would seem to be that, at least as far as Thom Tillis is concerned.  No worries, right?

But it begs the question of why ANY GOP senator is saying ANYTHING other than, "The next president is going to choose Justice Scalia's successor.  Period."  It's like Grassley and Tillis have "the nervous complaint" or something, shifting from foot to foot like they've got to pee, wringing their hands, getting nervous, their eyes darting fearfully and furtively back and forth, like they're going to be "knock-outed" at any moment, the convictions of which they had the courage just a few days ago acceleratingly fading into their metaphorical rear-view mirrors, the constitutional authority and power they possess forgotten.

I think they want to do the right thing.  The question, as it always is with congressional 'Pubbies, is whether they'll have the balls to do it.

Incidentally, if Grassley holds confirmation hearings, and Graham and Tillis vote with the Democrats, Mrs. Clinton or Mrs. Hargrove (i.e. Loretta Lynch) would presumably win the additional Republican support of at least John McCain, Mark Kirk, and Susan Collins.  Toss in Grassley and there's a least a 52-48 victory for the White House, which would require a Republican filibuster even though they are the majority party.  I would think that would make the GOP look more way more "obstructionist" than simply refusing to consider any Obama nominee this year.  Which is why Dems are already going hardcore on trying to goad them into it, because they know, even if Pachyderms are incapable of realizing it, that the point of no return is not at the end of this process, but at its starting gates.  Right now the Senate GOP holds all the cards by virtue of the fact that they don't HAVE to do ANYTHING.  But once they were to move that train out of the proverbial station, there'd be no stopping it.

Let us also not forget that the media is trying to gin up conservative grassroots angst by barraging Republican senators with questions that lead to seemingly or potentially wavering answers like those of Grassley and Tillis over the past twenty four hours.  They'd be wise to study the media-handling technique of Marshawn Lynch....

....except instead of saying "Yeah," or "I'm just here so I don't get fined," reply, "The next president is going to choose Justice Scalia's successor.  Period" like a parakeet with Tourettes.

Who knows?  With enough blanket repetition, the message might not only get across, but get over.

UPDATE: The Obamedia is really turning up the heat.

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